Obama to talk about economy at Illinois college
July 21st, 2013
08:00 PM ET
10 years ago

Obama to talk about economy at Illinois college

(CNN) - President Barack Obama will hit the road again to talk about jobs and the economy, resetting the message amid a busy summer that's so far been dominated by immigration reform efforts, the IRS scandal, national security leaks and the president's trips to Europe and Africa.

Obama will return to Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois on Wednesday to kick off a series of speeches about his economic plan, White House senior adviser Dan Pfeiffer wrote in an e-mail to supporters Sunday evening.

The president will also visit Warrensburg, Missouri, on Wednesday and travel to Jacksonville, Florida, the following day to speak again on the country's economic conditions. During additional stops in the coming weeks, Pfeiffer wrote Obama will touch on jobs, education, health care and retirement, including "new ideas and new pushes for ideas he has discussed before."

"He'll talk about the progress we've made together, the challenges that remain, and the path forward," Pfeiffer wrote in the e-mail, referring to the Knox College speech.

According to a White House official, the road show will wrap up before Washington faces another debt ceiling deadline around the end of September. Wednesday’s speech will also include mention of the economic case for immigration reform, the official confirmed.

The e-mail included a link to a video that harkens back to Obama's 2005 speech at Knox College–not long after Obama was elected U.S. senator–when the White House says Obama gave his first major address about his economic ideas.

"It’s been the creation of a massive middle class, through decent wages and benefits and public schools, that allowed us all to prosper," he said at the time. "It depended on a belief in the free market, but it also depended on our sense of mutual regard for each other."

The video splices together quotes from some of the president's economic-themed speeches since then, including many familiar refrains that focus on the middle class.

Polls indicate that the economy remains the top issue on the minds of Americans.

"The economy, and the things we can do to help it grow and strengthen and secure and expand the middle class, has been, is and will be the central focus of the president's domestic policy," White House press secretary Jay Carney said on Friday.

In late May and early June, Obama held events about jobs in Baltimore, Maryland; Austin, Texas; and Charlotte, North Carolina. The White House touts the growth of 7.2 million private-sector jobs in the last 40 months and an unemployment level that has dropped to 7.6% from its peak of 10% in October 2009.

Republicans, however, argue the president is pursuing the wrong economic policies, citing the still relatively high unemployment rate as an example. The president's first step, many have argued in recent weeks, should be repealing Obamacare, a program they consider detrimental to job creation.

Their argument was further bolstered earlier this month when the White House announced it would delay a key provision of the program that requires employers to provide health insurance. House Republicans passed a bill last week requiring the Obama administration to delay the provision that requires individuals to get health insurance or face a penalty.

- CNN’s Adam Aigner-Treworgy, Jessica Yellin, Paul Steinhauser and Ashley Killough contributed to this report.

Filed under: Economy • Jobs • President Obama
soundoff (333 Responses)
  1. bill davis

    Let's hope he does better than he did for Chicago, 21 Blacks got shot up there this week end, and no one knows their names..

    July 21, 2013 11:10 pm at 11:10 pm |
  2. bob

    I voted for Obama, but I think he doesn't have a clue about business, or how to help businesses create jobs. It is frustrating that no leading Washington politician ever talks about lowering the corporate tax rate (to bring corporations back to the U.S.), or giving tax breaks to U.S.companies for every U.S. based new job they create that pays over say $40000 annually, or giving tax breaks to companies that provide healthcare for employees. Specific items like these, would motivate companies to hire, and job creation would help everyone.

    July 21, 2013 11:12 pm at 11:12 pm |
  3. El Dee

    Once again, he will focus like a laser. LOL!

    July 21, 2013 11:12 pm at 11:12 pm |
  4. AnnoyedByPolitcs

    I think I just threw up a little. Will he ACTUALLY be focusing this time, or will it be just enough to generate a few good media stories like last time.

    hope he doesn't "forget" about it this time too...

    July 21, 2013 11:14 pm at 11:14 pm |
  5. maltfalcon3

    Glad to read that the President is interested in refocusing on the national economy. That would automatically include the international economy.

    July 21, 2013 11:15 pm at 11:15 pm |
  6. mkuske

    Uhhhh...for Obama to "refocus" on the the economy means he had to have been focused on it previously at some point in his first 5 years as President...which he hasn't...ever. Probably need to change that headline link text, CNN.

    July 21, 2013 11:15 pm at 11:15 pm |
  7. Marcin

    Now that President Obama has solved healthcare, gay marriage, racial killings, arab spring, wind turbines, gitmo, war on terror, domestic spying, carbon taxes, white house beer formula, obesity, gun control, offshore drilling, solar energy, Iran nuclear containment, international spying, airport security, war on women, electric cars, and secret nicorettes, it's finally time to turn that laser-like focus to solving the jobs problem. Hallelujah!

    July 21, 2013 11:18 pm at 11:18 pm |
  8. Larry

    The only problem the Republicans have with a national health care plan s that the rich don't need it. They have health insurance so why would they want to pay for anyone else to have it. Bankruptcy and foreclosures provide opportunities of the rich to get even richer.

    July 21, 2013 11:24 pm at 11:24 pm |
  9. Adam

    Refocus? That means he at one time WAS focused on it.

    July 21, 2013 11:26 pm at 11:26 pm |
  10. oldpatriot

    Refocusing ? he should have never taken his eye off of the economy in the first place.
    Please Mr President can you at least focus on whats best for the people until the end of this term ?

    July 21, 2013 11:26 pm at 11:26 pm |
  11. Bill Smells

    On CNN's front page I saw "NEW Obama refocusing on economy". Why yes, that is new. It's about time that after assuming the presidency 5 years ago at the beginning of a recession he decides to focus on the economy. When was the first time? Are you crediting him with implementing the Bush Stimulus package?

    This president is a bane on the economy.

    July 21, 2013 11:28 pm at 11:28 pm |
  12. Grant

    Obama refocusing on the economy
    I have a cute bridge to sell.
    yadda,yadda, yadda.

    July 21, 2013 11:29 pm at 11:29 pm |
  13. Del

    It's almost comical that he's talking about the economy when federal working are on furlough and he's on vacation AGAIN in Martha's Vineyard.

    July 21, 2013 11:31 pm at 11:31 pm |
  14. Preston Thompson

    It seems to me that the economy has become more complex over the years, which has changed the variables that influence the economy for better or worse. I think this is very harmful to the tradition oriented republicans.

    July 21, 2013 11:36 pm at 11:36 pm |
  15. Steve H.

    The biggest problem is that Obama has a plan. Central planning doesn't work. Never has, never will.

    When the government stops planning and stops spending, then we have a chance to recover. Until then, we're going off a cliff and the impact will be catastrophic.

    July 21, 2013 11:37 pm at 11:37 pm |
  16. Name obey

    It's about time but what we need is action and support not talk! And quit messing with business, especially small business with obamacare, taxes, etc!!!

    July 21, 2013 11:41 pm at 11:41 pm |
  17. James

    Finally. Drop all this nonsense of amnesty and other trivial matters. Focus on the economy and you will get America back on your side

    July 21, 2013 11:43 pm at 11:43 pm |
  18. Thomas Jefferson on Gun Control

    Since the Democrats are great friends of the working class, the labor unions, and the factory workers, why doesn't he roll out his plan to stop manufacturing job loses and how they are going to get those manufacturing jobs back in the USA? He has had four and a half years, surely that plan should be pretty elaborate by now. Time to stop the bleeding!!!

    July 21, 2013 11:46 pm at 11:46 pm |
  19. Dan

    Thank God. Another Obama speech on the economy, I feel so much better.

    July 21, 2013 11:48 pm at 11:48 pm |
  20. TruthandConsequence

    So, does refocusing on the economy mean he admits he lost his focus on the economy along the way?

    July 21, 2013 11:49 pm at 11:49 pm |
  21. LittleBabyJesus

    Wow, what a concept!

    July 21, 2013 11:51 pm at 11:51 pm |
  22. Bill

    NL! He needs to divide the nation more! That's what this prick does best!

    July 21, 2013 11:51 pm at 11:51 pm |
  23. reply

    Refocused? Never realized he was focused on the economy.

    July 21, 2013 11:52 pm at 11:52 pm |
  24. Robbie

    Simply put, he should have always focused on the economy. There should have never been a moment when he wasn't focused on creating jobs. Instead, like all other politicians, he promised what couldn't be delivered. His agenda was always at the forefront, not what needed to be done.

    July 21, 2013 11:54 pm at 11:54 pm |
  25. alaskagy

    Did he get a new laser beam? or is it going to be used this time.

    July 21, 2013 11:55 pm at 11:55 pm |
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